FOCUS K3D Newsletter (Feb 09)


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FOCUS K3D - Foster the Comprehension and Use of Knowledge intensive 3D media

Newsletter 2 (February 2009), download at

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FOCUS K3D Newsletter (Feb 09)

  1. 1. Newsletter 02 february 09 FOster the Comprehension and USe of Knowledge intensive 3D media Topics Editorial One of the visions of FOCUS K3D is to identify important fu- 1. Questionnaire ture research and technological directions for semantic 3D assessment summary media, where Geometry (digital shape representations of phy- sical or virtual objects; for example of molecules in bioinfor- 2. Results of the ad hoc matics) is enhanced by Knowledge Technologies (such as me- Ewald Quak, SINTEF tadata, ontologies, and reasoners; for example to describe the meetings behaviour and functions of molecules, or organize large databases of them) in order to efficiently and effectively model, reuse and share 3D Content 3. State-of-the-art reports (= Geometry + Knowledge). on 3D content In the project’s initial phase we have taken a crucial step in that direction, na- mely to actually find out more about the current use of knowledge technologies 4. Semantic scenarios of – or lack thereof – both in industry and in the research communities working the future in the four areas, which we have decided to concentrate on in what we call Application Working Groups (AWGs): Medicine and Bioinformatics, Gaming and 5. Digital Shape Simulation, CAD/CAE and Virtual Product Modeling, Archaeology and Cultural Heritage. Workbench The FOCUS K3D questionnaires 6. Events We elaborated a set of different four-part questionnaires, with some ques- tions common for the whole set, and others specific to the application 7. Project partners areas. Part I collected general information about the participants (type of institution and application area, size, etc.). Part II addressed the “Current situation and practices”. Part III and IV aimed at identifying “Gaps and desiderata” and “Future lines of research”, respectively. While we have concluded the first assessment phase, the questionnaires are available at our web portal and can still be filled online, as we are always interested in broadening our information base. Assessment of the questionnaires Selected individuals at relevant companies, research institutes or uni- versities were contacted and asked to fill the forms; some of those who responded were then later contacted to set up additional personal meet- ings to obtain even more in-depth information. The benchmark of at least 60 answered questionnaires – the number we considered as necessary to have a basis for a meaningful evaluation – was reached in December 2008. An initial assessment was prepared at the end of January 2009. Some results just state the obvious: small game developing companies are not interested in research; semantic issues are of much higher inter- est for those handling large models (of Giga- or Tera-byte size) or large repositories of thousands of models. Others were maybe not so expected: most people, even from an industrial background, seem to be quite will- ing to share metadata and other semantic content. The next steps: state-of-the-art reports and thematic workshops The questionnaire assessments form the basis of public state-of-the-art reports on Shapes and Semantics in the four AWG areas, which will be available shortly after this Newsletter has been published. Everyone is welcome to download these reports from our web portal, just a quick reg- Example for fast design and reshaping istration is necessary – we might want to contact you for your opinion or with GML (Generative Modeling Languange) further input. The reports will then lead to position papers for discussions - Semantics to generate rules for furniture of the existing problems and the way forward in semantic 3D media, to be held at AWG-specific workshops later this summer. This is your chance to contribute, so get in touch! Your comments and your presence at these events are most welcome. Ewald Quak
  2. 2. Newsletter 02 Before we can discuss in detail fu- technologies, even if half of the users 1. Questionnaire ture directions concerning 3D Content claim not to be familiar with them. Con- assessment (= Geometry + Knowledge) in industry, cerning the adopted knowledge techno- summary research and educational institutions, logies, there is a wide preference for da- we first need to know more about the tabases and metadata in each AWG, and current status: what people know about apart from CAD/CAE, all of them also use 3D Content, if they already use it them- quite often taxonomies and ontologies. selves, with which tools are they famili- Respondents from Archaeology and Cul- ar regarding Geometry and Knowledge tural Heritage and from Medicine claim Technologies, what are the perceived to be dissatisfied with the way they gaps or bottlenecks, and finally where manage and store 3D content, while they see future developments. While CAD/CAE and Virtual Product Modeling, our first assessment is now finished, the and Gaming and Simulation AWG mem- actual questionnaires are still accessible bers are quite satisfied but would expect online via the project web portal. The up- an improvement. to-date lists of AWG member institutions Obviously, there seem to be differen- and companies (external to the FOCUS ces concerning the assessment of the K3D consortium) can also be found in current limitations in the four AWGs. 73% 58 76 the AWG section of the web portal. of CAD/CAE AWG users think that limita- With 134 people having been contac- tions are due to methodologies instead of ted so far, our conclusions are based on equipment, which is a surprisingly high 76 filled questionnaires. Note that we percentage and is a message pinpointing lled questionnaires had set ourselves a limit of at least 60 to undertake the development of appli- responses to be able to draw meaning- cable methods for the whole process of did not ll questionnaires ful conclusions. All the submitted ques- 3D content creation. It has to be noted 76 of 134 contacted persons answered tionnaires provided usable information, that the mentioned limitations of the the questionnaire. with the respondents covering a wide used software tools are: lack of interac- range of professions: user, developer, tivity, non-intuitiveness of the interface, scientist, creator of 3D content, etc., level of detail (accuracy, resolution), and in the domains of Education/Research uncertainty in data (noise, outliers). (58%) and Industry (42%). Several Note that most of the people are inte- 58% 42% respondents declared interest in multiple rested in or already use open source AWGs but without answering the questi- products. onnaires of each AWG they chose. For the acquisition and creation of 3D Commonly, geometric and structural as- content, we proposed various methods industry pects seem to be considered as the most to the users, who had to evaluate them. education important by every AWG (except for Modeling from scratch is mainly con- Medicine and Bioinformatics AWG mem- sidered as slow and cumbersome; the 58% of the filled questionnaires came from the domain of education/ bers, who mostly prefer just the geome- re-use of existing models is fast and research while 42% were answered by tric one), on the other hand the impor- efficient but it is hard to find models; a industry. tance of the semantic aspect increases 3D scanner is perceived as both cum- with the amount of models to be handled bersome and fast; and a camera is usu- and the complexity of such models. Al- ally considered as inadequate or hard to most everybody is aware of knowledge work with. 2. Results of the To gather even more detailed informa- phics and Vision with Knowledge Tech- tion (beyond the filled questionnaires) nologies in order to make these selected ad hoc for our assessments and upcoming respondents better acquainted with the meetings state-of-the-art reports about the use potential of such approaches. While all of 3D Content, so far 21 “ad hoc” mee- contacted people make use of 3D con- tings have been organized with selected tent, the semantic aspect is still rather respondents both from industry and edu- poorly considered. Yet they all expressed cation/research institutions (e.g., Audi a great interest in adopting new know- AG, Lufthansa Technik AG, the Founda- ledge technologies and were invited to tion of the Hellenic World). During these contribute further to the activities of face-to-face meetings, members of the FOCUS K3D. Everyone interested in ha- FOCUS K3D consortium also made pre- ving such an “ad hoc” meeting with us sentations and carried out demonstra- should directly contact the leader of the tions about the research advances in the AWG that is most relevant for your in- methodologies coupling Computer Gra- dustrial or research activities. 2
  3. 3. Newsletter 02 3. State-of-the- Each state-of-the-art report is intended the questionnaires where we collected to draw a picture of the current use of current practices in the fields within the art reports on geometry and knowledge in the different scope of 3D geometry and knowledge. 3D content application domains and provide a cata- The reports reflect the diversity of the log of existing knowledge technologies, status of applicable knowledge intensi- domain ontologies and related initiatives ve methodologies in the respective do- and projects. We considered in all re- mains. ports the outcome of the assessment of In AWG Medicine and In medicine, geometric modeling as model molecular surfaces, volumes or Bioinformatics such is required, among others, for dia- interfaces, and scenarios in bioinforma- gnostics, therapy planning, surgery, ra- tics typically involve multi-scale geome- diotherapy and legal medicine, though tric modeling (rigid docking, side-chains a growing number of problems actually adjustment, molecular dynamics). In require a combination of geometry and terms of knowledge, pieces of informa- knowledge. tion such as chemical types and interac- One example scenario arises when si- tion types, homology between proteins, Contact person: mulating human articulations for repla- known partners, rigid domains within Frederic Cazals cement with a prosthesis. The different protein, key residues and correlated steps are bone resection, prosthesis motions are used. These pieces of infor- alignment and checking of motion am- mation are integrated so as to ultimate- plitudes. In terms of knowledge, the ly account for the affinity and specificity parameters of interest are contact pres- of interactions. sure within the cartilages, forces and muscle biomechanics. The connections A central resource for the bioinforma- to physiology are related to material tics communities is the Protein Data properties, as well as bone motion and Bank (PDB), which contains most of the geometry. The data process can be con- structures of bio-molecules experimen- siderably simplified when these parame- tally resolved. While the PDB is the end ters are stored into an ontology. of the journey for an experimentalist Typical 3D input in this area includes dealing with structure determination, it segmented image data from CT, MRI, is the starting point for molecular mo- MicroCT or other medical imaging de- deling projects, but also for biochemists vices. Other examples are CAD files seeking structural insights. from device producers or 3D reconst- ructed meshes. Image stacks from laser Because all users resort to the PDB, they scanning confocal microscopes are used are aware of knowledge technologies, to reconstruct 3D tissue morphology but most of them exclusively restrict and cell structures. their use to the PDB, though some dif- Most of the respondents to our ques- ficulties in conjunction with the PDB are tionnaire are currently handling only reported. One is that the available menu a few tens or a few hundreds of mo- of query criteria is considered somewhat dels. Their answers show that people arbitrary and it would seem desirable to are mostly interested in the geometry allow access to any given stored field for of their models, while knowledge tech- formulating queries. Another difficulty is nology is not widely used. Although the impression that so far, the key para- users seem to be aware of knowledge meters governing the evolution of ma- technology in general, they are not cro-molecular systems are still poorly using them and just resort to in-house understood. Therefore, databases pro- software to manage their 3D content. viding advanced queries in conjunction with a particular geometric - biophysi- Structural bioinformatics is concer- cal model often lack generality. Though ned with the investigation of the re- advanced query mechanisms have been lationship between the structure made available recently, they apparently and the function of bio molecules. have not pervaded the wide community Fostering this understanding has of Molecular Modeling yet. Also Labora- major applications in fundamen- tory Information Management Systems tal biology, but also in drug design. play an ever-increasing role to manage Geometry plays an important role to complex experimental systems. 3
  4. 4. Newsletter 02 In AWG CAD/CAE and The state-of-the-art report about CAD/ given answers about conforming to any Virtual Product CAE and virtual product development standards mentioned a specific standard Modeling tries to summarize actual ICT deve- for the different purposes, for example: lopments in this area and tries to give ISO 10303, ISO 15926, IDEF-O, OWL/ answers to open questions coming up XML, STEP, IGES, and standards for FEM from the filled questionnaires. Obviously codes. Therefore the state-of-the-art CAD/CAM technologies do not address report is coming up with an overview the requirements of the integrated de- about methodologies in knowledge- sign engineering process completely. based engineering. Knowledge-based All too often, the CAD model is merely engineering extends the product design a geometric interpretation of the de- process beyond geometric modeling to Contact person: sign intent. Design iteration is achieved capture the knowledge of a company’s André Stork by iterative procedures that are cum- most important asset - the experience bersome and inevitably stretch design of its engineers. Unlike CAD systems timescales. In today’s dynamic market- that manipulate mainly geometric infor- place, customer needs and specifications mation, KBE systems capture the engi- change often and as a result knowledge neering intent behind the product - the management solutions within the engi- how and why aspects of the design. neering domain becomes an issue. Our survey of CAD/CAE and virtual pro- All the respondents of the questionnaire duct modeling has another focus on are aware of knowledge technologies in engineering ontologies which reflects general and their benefits but almost half the open issue from the questionnaires of them do not feel very familiar with that users of 3D modeling systems need them. This maybe explains why most of more support for the “intelligent” hand- them prefer to use databases and meta- ling and usage of 3D digital content in data instead of taxonomies, ontologies order to deploy 3D modeling in their or- and neural and statistical learning. For ganizations and enhance its extended the managing and organization of data and downstream capabilities, for signi- people have different systems in usage, ficant, quantifiable benefits in time and ranging from a simple database up to savings. PDM or PLM systems. Only half of the In AWG Gaming and The community involved in the gaming technologies promise to help with this and simulation application area is very by offering better ways to manage, re- Simulation diverse and multifaceted. However, one trieve, and therefore reuse existing 3D mutual concern is often the need to pro- models. Our review of related current vide the fastest but yet most realistic research themes in the area of gaming computer graphics. However, game and and simulation and the survey among simulation designers do not only have people working in this field suggests to create realistic models of objects and that both academia as well as industries characters in 3D virtual worlds but al- are aware of the limitations and put high so mutual relations between them and hopes in the improvements knowledge their virtual environment. Knowledge technologies could provide in the future. technologies promise solutions for the This growing awareness is also reflected related problems. Our survey shows in the review of knowledge technologies Contact person: that although they have not really ar- that we present as part of this state-of- Wolfgang Huerst rived yet in the practical development, the-art report. In addition, we list relat- there is a growing awareness of this is- ed national initiatives and EU projects. sue among people working in this ar- Their growing number shows that the ea. Another characteristic of games and rapidly increasing economic importance simulations is that the related markets of games has alerted funding agencies offer high gains and therefore are highly to this subject, focussing mostly on seri- competitive. It is not only important to ous games. Based on our observations, provide the best, most realistic models, we believe that the application scenari- but also to produce them fast, resulting os described will witness a boost in the in a need for an effective and efficient use of knowledge technologies in the production process. Again, knowledge near future. 4
  5. 5. Newsletter 02 In AWG Archaeology The main interest of the community fo- this kind of digital content. Most reposi- and Cultural Heritage cuses on the organization and presenta- tories have a content-based organizati- tion of archaeological and cultural heri- on, however, the use of 3D knowledge tage content to “virtual visitors” and the technologies can provide effective se- development of educational and training mantic-based organization and efficient application scenarios for connecting real searching capabilities. and virtual artefacts. Semantic Web technologies and stan- Although great progress has been achie- dards (like the CIDOC-CRM) are widely Contact person: ved and 3D content is expected to be- known and used in this domain. Using Marios Pitikakis come predominant in Cultural Heritage, 3D knowledge technologies sometimes the involvement of “traditional” cultural frightens Culturual Heritage professionals institutions in 3D digitization is still li- because of the significant additional cost mited. The technology for capturing, for the equipment used for 3D data ac- storing and managing 3D digital content quisition and the high cost of skilled staff. still requires a great deal of research The recently launched Europeana – the effort compared to text- or image- European Digital Library, museum and oriented technology and it is not yet archive – contains a broad range of con- easily available for all cultural institu- tent from across Europe (like photos, tions. paintings, sounds, maps, manuscripts, Managing collections of 3D objects is at books, newspapers, film material etc.), an early stage and there is significant though there is a lack of 3D objects and debate whether the approaches adopted 3D related management and interopera- for digital libraries are suitable also for bility efforts. 4. Semantic In this section we intend to present easier. Not only can she search, semantic scenarios of the future of the retrieve, reuse, and extend existing scenarios of different AWGs. Other interesting scena- models easily, but also designing from the future rios will be published in the next news- scratch is now much more effective. letters. For example, today, she looks into her A glimpse of things to 'Evolving Personalized Information Con- come in semantic 3D Semantha is a 3D modeler and designer struct' (marketed by GoogleZone), and media in gaming and at the gaming company 'Iterative Life'. sees that she has modeled the feet last simulation She is currently designing and modeling week. According to the schedule, she a collection of characters for the next now must design the accompanying version of their game ‘Parallel Univer- gadgets for chiropody. She invokes the se Loophole Paradise’ (PULP). The cha- encyclopaedic dictionary to learn about racters in the game, the PULPese, have that, and the semantic network helps feet like wheels, arms like fins, and ears her to link these concepts to the main- like wings. She remembers that for the tenance tools for wheels. In the collec- game’s first release five years ago in tion of instruments she wants to select 2009, she spent days and nights creating those that somewhat fit to the feet and the initial design of those characters, only can be used as a start for modeling new to get them rejected by their bosses be- ones. On the basis of a shape thesaurus cause they did not look realistic enough. and a formal specification of concepts Although dealing with imaginary crea- about instruments (an ontology), the tures from a fantasy world, the bosses geometric feature extractor and classi- concluded that the characters have to fication tool has already categorized all follow common rules of physics because models into semantic classes. Using this people expect them to behave and react intelligent 3D content representation, according to how humans perceive their the shape matcher retrieves those inst- environment. She also remembers how rument models that are suitable for the painful it was to get the necessary infor- redesign process. mation and feedback from people with a Again, she remembers the old days and background in physics, engineers, etc. is quite happy that with this integrated before she could finally finish the mo- approach to search, annotate, and re- dels including all characteristics, design use semantic 3D media, the production restrictions, and rules for the behaviour and management workflows have be- of the characters. come much more effective than back in Now, the situation has become much 2009. 5
  6. 6. Newsletter 02 5. Digital Shape The shape repository from the the shape repository by uploading new AIM@SHAPE digital shape workbench models coming from the four applica- Workbench ( has tion domains covered by the Focus K3D been established as a premier sour- project. The procedure is facilitated by Call for contributions ce of quality shapes for researchers in guiding the user step by step through geometric modeling, computer graphics the uploading process. If you would like and geometry processing. It has recei- to add a shape to our repository or are ved more than 1.5 million visitors and interested in getting a personal demo 77,000 downloads since August 2004, of the DSW, please contact the leader and now contains more than 1081 of the AWG most pertinent to your own shapes with well-defined metadata. The activites. types of models range from unstructu- red point sets obtained by laser scan- ning to parametric surfaces through surface meshes, raster data and contour sets, to list a few. Beside metadata and easy browsing and searching, distinc- tive properties of the repository inclu- de variety, quality and completeness of the shapes: Some of them are availab- le in various formats such as paramet- ric surface, point set, surface mesh for research experiments and validation. We invite researchers and partners from the AWGs and beyond to contribute to 6. Events The networking session was co-orga- new partnerships for future proposals. nized by FOCUS K3D and the SMaRT In fact ICT 2008 was the most important ICT 2008 Networking society to stimulate debate and new forum in the field in 2008 at the Euro- partnerships in the area of semantic pean level and offered an extraordinary Session on “Semantics media technologies and semantic-based opportunity for convergence of a multi- in digital content: from modeling and processing, with a special disciplinary audience. multimedia to emerging focus on 3D content. The session inclu- The outcomes for FOCUS K3D were 3D media” Lyon, 26th ded a general project presentation by very promising and the project already November, 2008 Michela Spagnuolo (IMATI) and specific got specific feedback from participants presentations of the Application Working who in the meantime had filled our AWG Groups. questionnaires on the use of 3D and se- The networking session was attended by mantics in applications. Some of these approximately 70 people, actively parti- participants will be involved in the future cipating in the discussion and interested activities of FOCUS K3D. in either a direct collaboration with the More details on the event and the given ongoing projects and activities presen- presentations can be found on the web ted during the session or in proposing portal. Many participants were interested in the ICT Session of FOCUS K3D 6
  7. 7. Newsletter 02 Upcoming Events Date Event FOCUS K3D Activities March Workshop on Industry Challenges in Geometric As a FOCUS K3D event, the 12-13 Modeling, CAD and Simulation workshop will feature some 2009 Darmstadt, Germany presentations related to the CAD, Bioinformatics and tion-2009-1.pdf Cultural Heritage AWGs. March Workshop on “Anatomical Models”, Sophia Presentation of the project 15-19 Antipolis, France 2009 March Workshop on Flexibility in Biological Recogni- Presentation of the project 18-20 tion, Sophia Antipolis, France 2009 h t t p : / / w w w- s o p. i n r i a . f r / m a n i f e s t a t i o n s / fmr2009/index_en.shtml March CAA 2009 Distribution of project material 22-26 37th annual International Conference on and recruitment of new AWG 2009 Computer Applications and Quantitative Methods members in Archaeology Williamsburg, Virginia, USA March Workshop on 3D Object Retrieval 3DOR’09, A FOCUS K3D poster pres- 29 EUROGRAPHICS 2009 entation will be given at the 2009 Munich, Germany EG workshop on 3D Object Retrieval June CASA Workshop on 3D Advanced Media The FOCUS K3D Thematic 16 In Gaming And Simulation (3AMIGAS) Workshop is about the creation The Trippenhuis right in the center of Amsterdam, where the CASA Work- 2009 Amsterdam, The Netherlands and use of advanced 3D media shop takes place. in gaming and simulation Past Events October VSMM 2008 FOCUS K3D workshop about 20-26 Conference on Virtual Systems and Multimedia Promoting Semantic 3D Media, 2008 Dedicated to Digital Heritage project paper presentation Limassol, Cyprus December 3D Physiological Human organized by MIRALab A FOCUS K3D presentation 1-4 University of Geneva, Switzerland was held 2008 Zermatt, Switzerland December Workshop on Semantic 3D Media (S-3D), Workshop on the FOCUS K3D 3 in conjunction with SAMT 2008 themes organized and spon- 2008 Koblenz, Germany sored by the project February 3D-ARCH Workshop 2009 25-28 The 3rd 3D-ARCH workshop on “3D Virtual 2009 Reconstruction and Visualization of Complex Architectures” in Trento, Italy March Workshop on Challenges in Serious Games This seminar was dedicated to 2-3 Eurotel, Villars-sur-Ollon, Switzerland the game technology behind 2009 serious games including graphics, animation, A.I. 7
  8. 8. Newsletter 02 7. Project Institute for Applied Mathematics and Information partners Technologies (CNR-IMATI-GE), Italy Coordinator: Dr. Bianca Falcidieno Istituto di Matematica Applicata e Center for Research and Technology - Thessaly (CERETETH) Greece Tecnologie Informatiche Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale De Lausanne (VRlab-EPFL) Via De Marini 6, Switzerland 16149 Genova, Italy e-mail: Fraunhofer Institute for Computer Graphics Research (IGD) Germany Institut National de Recherche en Informatique et en Automatique (INRIA) France Université de Genève - MIRALab (MIRALab) Switzerland STIFTELSEN SINTEF Norway Utrecht University (UU) The Netherlands 8